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Reclaim (Blu-ray Review)

ReclaimReclaim, which stars Ryan Phillipe, Rachelle Lefevre and John Cusack, was primarily a Video OnDemand release back in September.  It did see release in a very limited fashion theatrically.  This is the second film of this kind of ilk that I’ve caught to review recently that had John Cusack.  The other was The Prince, which featured him prominently on the cover art, but he was barely in the film.  That isn’t the case here in Reclaim, as he has a pretty significant part in this with plenty of screen time.  Reclaim is yet another example of an adult thriller with actual stars hitting pretty much directly for the OnDemand market, whereas a similar film probably would have featured a wide theatrical release in the 1990s.

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Film 

Steven and Shannon think they are having dreams come true with the adoption of a little Haitian girl named Nina.  Following a car accident that not only miscarried their child but left Shannon unable to carry any additional children, this was the chance of a lifetime.  They have flown in to complete the process and pick her up.  After a couple of nights at the hotel waiting on Nina’s passport and visa to arrive, they wake up one morning to find her missing.  Steven and Shannon go on the hunt to find out what happened to Nina and find they are in the middle of a deadly scam.

Reclaim seems to have good intentions with being a thriller, but its execution and script is way too poor to be any bit of enjoyable.  Everything here is wildly predictable, and a viewer should never be as far ahead of the characters as one winds up when sitting through this movie.  I had no idea what this film was about going into it, and within just a few moments I felt the whole thing was telegraphed right away.  Even specific character details were obvious.  Now, certain things and insignificant details, no I didn’t have etched, but the general beats and basis for this movie are simple elementary mathematics (thought, its been decades since I took any, maybe they’re tougher than this movie).

While the film has some decent locales (Puerto Rico is where I think most, if not all, this move was shot), it still looks and feels pretty cheap.  And that may have to do with the camera used on the film being of such a high resolution or the post work not making it feel more cinematic.  It felt like some deep cable channel’s produciton that just seemed to have more notable actors playing the parts and more of a budget to use for some scenes of car chases.  It’s not something I’d normally ding a film for, and I’m not sure if I am here (I just merely am wanting to point it out) but when I’m pretty bored sitting through this movie, its something that I take note of more.  I noticed it right away and nothing ever grasped my attention enough to take my thoughts away from what I was seeing.

The cast here does their best with the material.  Cusack, unlike in The Prince, seems to be enjoying himself here.  It really shows that he’s making an effort to strengthen this character through his performance for as stale as it is on the page.  Unfortunately there’s not much more he can really do than what he’s done.  Phillipe brings his normal demeanor to the table, which does elevate this somewhat and make it more watchable than had it been lesser talent.  Rachelle Lefevre is someone I’m starting to become more of a fan of that I was indifferent of in seeing her in other things.  But, here, where she really has to be pushed to the limit with subpar material, I think she shines through it all and commits to making this work.

Reclaim is a film I was pretty much bored with for pretty much its entire runtime.  Some of the actors are fun to see play around, but its not enough.  The structure of the film is something you’ve seen play out time and time again.  All efforts result in a really weak movie.  I don’t know what could have been done to make this a better film, but what we got just doesn’t really cut it.  What I would like to “reclaim” is the time I spent watching this movie.

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Video 

Encoding: MPEG-4 AVC

Resolution: 1080p

Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1

Clarity/Detail:  This is definitely a very digital looking HD picture.  Movement is appears the way it does with some very high resolution video and doesn’t feel very cinematic at a many times.  Detail is super high and very sharp and crisp.  Surfaces and textures show every inch of detail.  Threads, dirt and dust are easily visible.  The trucks and cars in the film are spotted with every nick and scratch.

Depth:  Depth is capture quite naturally here.  Much of the foreground and background images are clear as can be featuring a good sense of space and distance.

Black Levels:  Blacks are rich, and lit well enough featuring plenty of detail.  I didn’t notice much any crushing at all.

Color Reproduction:  Colors are bold and rich.  Most of this is hot weather, whites, beiges and greens.  Rachelle Lefevre’s hair actually pops here and looks quite wonderfully detailed.

Flesh Tones:  Natural and consistent.  Every pore, scratch, stubble and wrinkle is accounted for.

Noise/Artifacts:  Clean

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Audio 

Audio Format(s): English 5.1 DTS-HD MA

Subtitles: English, English SDH, Spanish

Dynamics:  A solid track excelling where it has to, while not being outstanding as a whole.  Volume placement and screen accuracy run high.  There is a good balance between vocals, effects and scoring throughout the film, giving a nice lifelike and real feel.

Low Frequency Extension:  Crashes, thumps, thuds and gunfire feature a nice boost.  Engines rumble and hum quite good too, thanks to the subwoofer.

Surround Sound Presentation:  Primary use of the rear speakers goes to the ambiance and score.  The front speakers feature plenty of variation on volume, placement and side to side interaction.

Dialogue Reproduction:  Dialogue is loud, clean and appropriately placed.

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Extras 

Reclaim comes with an UltraViolet Digital Copy of the film.

Audio Commentary

  • Director Alan White

Behind The Scenes Of Reclaim (HD, 17:11) – Cast and crew take a look back through the production of the film with interviews and behind the scenes footage.

Deleted/Extended Scenes (HD, 8:14)

Interviews With Cast & Crew – Additional material from the interviews in the Behind The Scenes featurette

  • Alan White – Director (HD, 5:49)
  • Ryan Phillipe (HD, 2:00)
  • Rachelle Lefevre (HD, 3:25)
  • Jacki Weaver (HD, 2:05)
  • Briana Ray (HD, 1:03)

“Fighting The World” Music Video (HD, 3:23)

Reclaim Trailer (HD, 2:32)

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Summary 

While I wasn’t a fan of the film, Lionsgate has put together a very good release for it.  It features a very above average presentation, with a very high resolution in its video quality.  There are plenty of extras here for those who would like to “reclaim” more information on the film.  Though, I would say this movie is barely even worth a rental or your time doing a free stream.

Reclaim-Blu-ray

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Writer/Reviewer, lifelong obsessive film nerd. As eager to educate in the world of film as I am to learn. An avid lover of horror, schlock and trash, Brandon hosts the Cult Cinema Cavalcade podcast on the Creative Zombie Studios Network (www.cultcinemacavalcade.com) You can also find more essays on his blog Naptown Nerd (naptownnerd.blogspot.com).

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